Way back in the arcade days it didn’t matter too much how the screen was oriented. When you’re heading to the mall, corner store, or stand-alone arcade with a pocket full of quarters details like monitor setup are built right in to the hardware, after all, so it’s easy to take for granted. Then home gaming took over and for years you had to risk turning a giant tube-tv on its side if you wanted to get the full effect of Mars Matrix, Ikaruga, Gunbird 2, or most other arcade ports. Life with widescreen monitors is much easier in many ways but turning a 50 inch tv sideways is just asking for trouble, although thankfully a halfway decent PC monitor will come with rotation built into the stand. (It’s for work-related purposes, honest!) The Switch, however, holds the potential to simplify console arcade gaming immensely, but portable mode was still lacking a bit due to needing to prop up the screen. That’s all hopefully about to change thanks to a very successful start to Fangamer’s Flip Grip Kickstarter.
In normal portable usage the Switch Joy-Cons are attached to the short sides of the screen, which is great for most games. There are plenty of shooters and other arcade-style games already available that have an optional tate mode, and what the Flip Grip does is allow you to attach the Joy-Cons to the tall side of the screen instead. It’s an all-plastic holster for the system that you slide the screen into, designed for it to fit one way only with the game card and headphone jacks on the left. This means the power button is covered and the housing blocks where the power cord plugs in, but it should be an acceptable trade-off for portable full-screen shooter action.
Flip Grip launched earlier today on Kickstarter and at the time of this writing is almost at its goal. There’s basically zero chance the campaign failing, and seeing as the end product is a chunk of plastic that’s had its design work complete the only last concerns would be manufacturing and possibly the quality of plastic used, but this is by no means Fangamer’s first rodeo. Head on over to the campaign to take a look, and maybe choose from one of its two reward tiers while there. $12 for one or $24 for two, and that’s as complicated as it needs to be.